Have Twins, Will Travel

Boston Triathlon

South Boston, Massachusetts – Back in January, I made a New Year’s resolution to complete a triathlon this year (as I used to do, in my life before twins). Daddio surprised me by enrolling me in an early season race in May. And this weekend, I completed my second triathlon of the season, right here in South Boston. The Boston Triathlon offers both sprint-distance (750m swim, 20km bike, 5km run) and Olympic-distance races (twice as long), as well as a kids’ Splash & Dash.

The Splash & Dash was yesterday. As you might guess, it’s a swim-run event only, with no cycling leg. For the youngest kids (age 7 to 10) it’s a 100-yard swim and a 1km run. Older kids (age 11 to 15) go twice as far for each leg.

The twins were not excited about this event. I’m not sure why. I think they had some anxiety about the “race” part of it, not to mention their ever-present weariness of me organizing activities for them. But I was not giving them a choice this time. I worked hard to be in this triathlon and I wanted my family to share the experience with me. (Aka, forced fun by Mom.)

We were late to arrive, so we were rushing to make sure the twins were in the right place. It was more stressful than it needed to be. We didn’t have time to review the route and the kids didn’t really know what they were supposed to be doing.

But they are troopers. The swim started in waves, so they were able to watch some other kids doing it first, so they knew they could handle it. And they were ready.

The water was cold and it was hard to swim in a swarm of kids, but the twins were right in there. Then they ran up the beach and put their shoes on and took off again, one after another.

But they didn’t know the route. I guess Twin S followed another kid, and V was close behind. But the lead kid went the wrong way, apparently. As a result, all three of them skipped about three-quarters of the route and went straight to the finish line.

And that’s how the twins got second and third place in their first multisport event, the Boston Triathlon. (If that’s not good for one’s self-esteem, I don’t know what is!)

In my Boston Triathlon race today, I did not fare as well. A bad storm blew in last night. It was pouring rain when I left the house, so I gave the family a reprieve and told them they did not have to come cheer me on. (I would regret that later.)

Even worse, the storm made it unsafe for boats to be in the water, including the kayaks who serve as the safety patrol during the swim. So they canceled the swim (my strongest suit) and replaced it with an additional (shorter) run (my weakest suit) at the beginning of the race.

Two running segments with a bike ride in between. Basically my worst nightmare.

But I did it! I didn’t win (which is what the twins asked when I got home). I didn’t come in second place (or third), as they did. But I did it! Go, me!